My clients often seem unaware of how they allow their shadow-side to eclipse their brilliance. They are so focused on ‘getting it done’, checking things off the list, making the Board meeting, and hitting their numbers that they lose sight of their inner compass that will lead them home. They keep looking for external directional signs which often lead to thinking and playing small.
I have observed some common blocks that consistently sideline top leaders playing a competitive game rather than a collaborative one that values the ‘we over me’ mentality. You can remove these obstacles if you are familiar with any of the four blocks to brilliance below!
Many leaders have the attitude that they have to go it alone for fear of appearing human. They see it as an either/or dynamic and if they ask for help they appear weak and lack vision. The more evolved and inspirational leaders have not only dispelled this false belief – they actually gain power and energy from building a team and business with people and resources that complement their weaknesses! They freely admit what they can’t do or don’t know and derive enjoyment from filling these empty spaces in their resume’ and life with people and resources that create the perfect masterpiece.
Lack of Clarity
Most people can talk at great length about what they don’t like or what is missing from their life. They hate their life. They hate their wife or husband. Their health is less than ideal and they complain about too much work and too little time. They worry about retirement, their kids seem distant, and the list of dissatisfaction goes on and on. But, when I ask them what they want, there is often a deafening silence. They are typically speechless and simply do not know! When your primary focus is on what you don’t want, don’t like, or don’t have in your life then you aren’t leaving space to dream the dream or hold the vision for who you want to be and what you want to achieve.
Listening to the Voice “Out There”
I continue to be amazed at top level leaders who are living the script someone else wrote for them rather than writing and living their own. Often there was an influential parent, friend or mentor that believed in them, and perhaps with the best of intentions, offered them counsel or advice that had a long lasting impact on their life. Rather than being inner or self directed they allow external forces or people shape their life. It’s like someone else’s vision blocks or totally negates their own.
Confuse Activity with Achievement
When we measure our success by activity we will miss the mark. Anyone can fill a calendar – we do that almost without thinking with the constant demands each day presents to us. The real measure of progress is achievement in the form of measurable results. Busy-ness does not equate to good sound business. With the constant interruptions, non-stop electronic devices, and unending email it takes intentional effort to filter the noise out there and hear the voice within. Effective leaders and people prioritize what, how and with whom they will spend their time.
There’s no prize for traveling solo, lack of clarity only leads to confusion, following other people’s dreams leaves you empty, and the voice that matters is your own or the higher voice inside your heart. So, decide to ‘find the shine within’ rather than following all the glaring lights ‘out there’. When you have an inner compass, it will always lead you home to the best version of you that naturally elicits your most brilliant self.